Ledesma, a company from Buenos Aires, led Argentine citrus exports in 2019. It exported 28,429 pallets, i.e. almost 10% of all the citrus exported by the country. The company's main fresh fruit export is the Valencia orange, which it mainly ships to the European Union, Russia, and Southeast Asia. Last year, for the first time, the company sold lemons to the United States, a market to which it previously had no access. In 2020, Ledesma expects to export to that country more than double what it exported there last year, the firm stated.
This year's campaign started with the harvest of the early varieties of lemons, grapefruits, and oranges. This week it will continue with the harvest of Valencia oranges, which will last until September. Fruit harvesting and processing are carried out under strict sanitary protocols due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, this year Ledesma will have a new calibrator that classifies the fruit by size, color, and quality. The company invested 1.3 million dollars in this state-of-the-art equipment.
Ledesma also exports fresh fruit to new markets in the Middle and the Far East, Canada, Brazil, Norway, and Eastern Europe, among other destinations. In the domestic market, Ledesma supplied customers of the Central Market and peripheral markets of Greater Buenos Aires, as well as different customers and supermarkets within the country.
In 2019, a large part of orange and grapefruit juices were also marketed in the external market, due to the drop in beverage consumption in the local market. Lemon juice is destined almost exclusively for export, mainly to the European and US markets.